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Re: Lyrics above staff height inconsistent

From: Aaron Hill
Subject: Re: Lyrics above staff height inconsistent
Date: Wed, 10 Nov 2021 09:22:27 -0800
User-agent: Roundcube Webmail/1.4.9

On 2021-11-10 7:46 am, Adam Good wrote:
Dear List,

Here's a question I'm sure has been asked and answered often. I much prefer
lyrics below the staff but if I had to, in the example below, what is
causing the lyrics on the 2nd and 3rd stafflines to be higher than
staffline 1? Playing with:

\override VerticalAxisGroup.nonstaff-relatedstaff-spacing.padding

...doesn't quite deliver for me.

Padding is only one element of spacing. You need to consider basic-distance and minimum-distance, perhaps also stretchability.

LilyPond will try to accommodate basic-distance though it does not force it to be exact, as it may compress or stretch vertical spacing when fitting music to the page. While minimum-distance does define a strict lower bound for the spacing, elements still could be stretched apart. Both basic- and minimum-distance are measured from baseline-to-baseline, whereas padding factors in the skylines of the content to ensure a specified distance between "ink".

The default spacing for Lyrics is a basic-distance of 5.5, padding of 0.5, and stretchability of 1. minimum-distance is unspecified, which I believe defaults to zero.

In your example, LilyPond could not accommodate the 5.5 basic-distance for the top line of Lyrics and reduced it to the minimum; however, factoring in padding results in it being a little further away. Since there seems to be quite a bit of paper space available, it is odd that the basic-distance could not be satisfied. Perhaps there is a subtle bug in the layout logic.

The easy fix is to specify minimum-distance as well. If you like 5.5 as a basic-distance, just match that value.

-- Aaron Hill

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